ERTMS vs CBTC debated at SmartRail Europe


Next week’s SmartRail Europe conference and expo in Amsterdam focuses largely on information technology and its application to railways – but there’s a couple of signalling gems in the agenda which might be worthy of interest.

It’s on the second day, Tuesday February 25, where signalling takes centre stage, with dicussions about the merits of CBTC versus ERTMS, next generation signalling, how to make the most of ERTMS. High profile speakers include Turkish State Railways (TCDD) Signalling Manager Yusel Yabar, Infrabel Deputy Directur Infrastructure, Department of Signalling Projects Ivan Thielemans, and ERTMS Users Group Managing Director Michel Ruesen.

Interoperability and traffic management are also examined, with DB Netz openETCS Project Leader Klaus-Rudiger Hase and UK Rail Safety and Standards Board Head of Traffic Operations and Management examing the big issues around this crucial area.

It looks set to be an intriguing series of presentations from industry experts at one of the first major rail events of 2014.


Marmaray Project opens

Turkey’s 13km, USD 4.6billion Marmaray Project opened for revenue earning service today after a huge construction programme which links both sides of the Straits of Bosphorus for the first time by rail.

With an extensive high-speed rail network well under way, journey times between Turkey’s capital, Ankara, and Istanbul are set to be cut by up to three hours. Initially however, it will be commuters who derive most benefit from the Marmaray Project, with journey times from the European to the Asian half of Istanbul slashed while long-distance passengers will have to wait until 2015 before through trains begin operation.

The signalling is a genuine world first – Communications Based Train Control with automatic operation for commuter services, with long distance passenger and freight trains set to run under ETCS Level 1. The technology – installed by Invensys Rail (now Siemens) is also in operation on Istanbul’s metro.

Commuter trains will run at around two-minute intervals at peak times, with capacity expected to be 75,000 passengers per hour.

TCDD boss visits Invensys Rail


TCDD at InnoTrans

Mr Suleyman Karaman Director General of the TCDD operates the ERTMS
simulator on the Invensys Rail stand at Innotrans in Berlin.

Turkish State Railways (TCDD) Director General Mr Suleyman Karaman was yet another high-profile visitor to Invensys Rail’s stand at InnoTrans on September 18, meeting key members of the company’s technical and commercial teams responsible for delivering a series of major projects in Turkey.

With progress continuing on the ambitious Marmaray Project – the world’s first dual installation of ERTMS and CBTC – Mr Suleyman Karaman tried his hand on Invensys Rail’s high-tech ERTMS Level 2 simulator, which offers a virtually experience to that which train drivers will have when the Marmaray Project goes live.

TCDD continues signalling improvements

Turkish State Railway (TCDD’s) ambitious enhancement programme continues with the announcement of Invensys Rail as the signalling supplier for the Hasanbey Logistics Centre in North West Turkey.

The fit-out looks comprehensive, with Invensys Rail providing Westrace electronic interlockings, train detection systems, LED lineside signals, point machines and heaters, plus anciliary equipment and buildings and training.